If I had it my way, farm-fresh veggies would trend more on the Internet than ice cream dosa. But before we get into that, let's understand what hydroponic farming is. It basically entails growing plants without soil, directly in nutrient-rich water. The benefits afforded by this science are many. It allows growers to produce food anywhere, at any time of the year, and to reap higher yields with just a few resources. Plants grown in this manner are also devoid of herbicides and pesticides. An example of the possibilities extended by hydroponics is that we can put up a farm directly behind restaurants to serve super fresh produce. Sounds revolutionary? Certainly.
Luckily for us, Mumbai is now skirted by several hydroponic farms, many of which are delivering produce right to your doorstep. And I took it upon myself to pick four that are serving everything from arugula leaves and cucumbers for your salad bowls, to seasonal saags.
Green Block Farms
From crisp arugula leaves for your watermelon and feta salad to massive peppers that can be cubed and skewered in between blocks of tandoori tofu to make a clean snack, this farm does a variety of vegetables, out of which we like their celery and cherry tomatoes. Dill for herbs ranks high.
For all the green juicers out there, this one is your best bet. Ready to blitz celery, opal basil, kale leaves, snacking cucumbers and fresh green amaranth can be found here. If you want to toss a salad of coloured Swiss chard and homemade ricotta, order in from them. Or, get your hands on their blue pea tea for a bluesy drink.
To order: 9819077857
Address: Stemwater Farms, Talegaon 411037, Pune District, Maharashtra.
If a scrummy Thai curry is on your mind, then Satvik Greens can do the base work for you. Order in their fresh bok choy and zucchini to add into your pan. Pad up the meal with some pad Thai salad featuring gluten-free noodles, kale leaves and yellow tomatoes. The veggies retain their crunch on cooking and are utterly fresh.
To order: 7021023643
Address: Mastermind 3, Royal palms, Goregaon, Mumbai.
Their USP is the ''DIY Grow Kit' that will channelise your green thumb. Perfect to grow your own chillies, herbs, salads greens, tomatoes, lettuce and more.
To order: +91 88502 04842
Address: 01, Chimbai, near Joggers Park, Bandra West Mumbai
Sonal Ved is the editor at IFN. She is also an author of an award-winning cookbook called Tiffin. She travelled through the first five tastes to be able to tell between a brie and provolone dolce. She can make stellar undhiyu and a green smoothie.